y The Rabbits single work   drama   opera   - 60 minutes
Adaptation of The Rabbits John Marsden 1998 single work picture book
Note: Libretto by Lally Katz. Music by Kate Miller-Heidke.
Issue Details: First known date: 2015 2015
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AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'John Marsden and Shaun Tan's haunting picture book tells a story we all know: a story of colonisation, civilisation and progress — a story about displacement, destruction and culture clash. And in that landscape, it tells a story of hope taking root.

'It's a story for young people, it's a story for old people, it's a story for all of us.

'Opera Australia and Barking Gecko Theatre Company have assembled some of Australia's foremost creative talents to collaborate on a new opera for children and families.

Gabriela Tylesova's kooky sets and costumes realise Tan's pictures in all of their mystical wonder, while Lally Katz has turned Marsden's spare poetry into an enchanting libretto. To write the score, Kate Miller Heidke: the butterfly-voiced, classically-trained indie-pop singer who is as at home on the charts as she is performing at the Met. As well as composing The Rabbits, Kate will perform in this production.' (Production summary)

Production Details

  • An Opera Australia and Barking Gecko Theatre Company co-production. In association with West Australian Opera. Commissioned by Melbourne Festival and Perth International Arts Festival. World premiere at Arts Centre, Melbourne, Playhouse : 9-13 October 2015

    LIBRETTIST: Lally Katz

    DIRECTOR: John Sheedy

    MUSICAL DIRECTOR & MUSICAL ARRANGEMENTS: Iain Grandage

    DESIGNER: Gabriela Tylesova

    CAST: Including Kate Miller-Heidke

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Works about this Work

Hitting the Right Note Nick Galvin , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 16-17 January 2016; (p. 18)
The Rabbits Hops on to Opera Prize Shortlist Simone Fox Koob , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 3 March 2016; (p. 14)
Stage Award Race a Tale of Two Tims Stephen Bevis , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The West Australian , 21 June 2016; (p. 17)
Indigenous Performers in QPAC Run of New Opera the Rabbits 2016 single work review
— Appears in: Koori Mail , 24 February no. 620 2016; (p. 39)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
'Indigenous performers are among the cast of Australian opera The Rabbits, playing in Brisbane next month...'
Creatures of Havoc Chris Hook , Clare Morgan , 2016 single work review
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 5 March 2016; (p. 4)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
'Kate Miller-Heidke has turned an award-winning picture book about native marsupials invaded by rabbits into an award-winning opera that captures the parallel themes of white settlement and black dispossession, write Chris Hook and Clare MorganWhen Brisbane pop singer Kate Miller-Heidke checked out the children’s book that theatre director John Sheedy wanted to turn into an opera, ...'
The Rabbits' Den Matthew Westwood , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 7-8 February 2015; (p. 3-4)
'Not everyone thinks of turning a children’s picture book into an opera, writes Matthew Westwood.'
New Opera in Australia : It's Not Over Till Senator Brandis Sings Steve Dow , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 19 March 2015;
'It’s hard enough to mount an Australian opera, let alone revive one. Ahead of the findings of the national opera review, we hear from the rabbits and the riders.'
Helpmanns Looking to Keep up with Emerging Trends Matthew Westwood , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 28 July 2015; (p. 15)
Genre-bending Bunnies Storm Helpmanns Ashleigh Wilson , Matthew Westwood , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 28 July 2015; (p. 5)
One Little Bit of Help, Man Antimo Iannella , Anna Vlach , Matt Gilbertson , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Advertiser , 28 July 2015; (p. 21)
Creatures of Havoc John Marsden , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Saturday Age , 22-23 August 2015; (p. 8) The Sydney Morning Herald , 22-23 August 2015; (p. 8-9)
Gorgeous SA Return Matt Gilbertson , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Sunday Mail , 18 October 2015; (p. 87)
Triumph for Genre Hoppers Mark Coughlan , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Australia , 17 February 2015; (p. 14)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
A Good Ear for Opera Andrew Taylor , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 7 February 2015; (p. 36)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
The Rabbits Review – Triumphant Adaptation of a Deeply Tragic Story Vanessa Badham , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 18 February 2015;

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
Michael Halliwell Reviews 'The Rabbits' Michael Halliwell , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , November no. 376 2015; (p. 48)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
Holloway's Final Festival a Tribute to the Epic and Intimate Blend of Epic and Intimate Bhakthi Puvanenthiran , 2014 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 6 November 2014; (p. 32) The Sydney Morning Herald , 6 November 2014; (p. 32)
A Good Ear for Opera Andrew Taylor , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Age , 7 February 2015; (p. 36)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
Triumph for Genre Hoppers Mark Coughlan , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Australia , 17 February 2015; (p. 14)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
The Rabbits Review – Triumphant Adaptation of a Deeply Tragic Story Vanessa Badham , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 18 February 2015;

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
Michael Halliwell Reviews 'The Rabbits' Michael Halliwell , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: Australian Book Review , November no. 376 2015; (p. 48)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
Indigenous Performers in QPAC Run of New Opera the Rabbits 2016 single work review
— Appears in: Koori Mail , 24 February no. 620 2016; (p. 39)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
'Indigenous performers are among the cast of Australian opera The Rabbits, playing in Brisbane next month...'
Creatures of Havoc Chris Hook , Clare Morgan , 2016 single work review
— Appears in: The Courier-Mail , 5 March 2016; (p. 4)

— Review of The Rabbits Lally Katz 2015 single work drama
'Kate Miller-Heidke has turned an award-winning picture book about native marsupials invaded by rabbits into an award-winning opera that captures the parallel themes of white settlement and black dispossession, write Chris Hook and Clare MorganWhen Brisbane pop singer Kate Miller-Heidke checked out the children’s book that theatre director John Sheedy wanted to turn into an opera, ...'
Holloway's Final Festival a Tribute to the Epic and Intimate Blend of Epic and Intimate Bhakthi Puvanenthiran , 2014 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 6 November 2014; (p. 32) The Sydney Morning Herald , 6 November 2014; (p. 32)
The Rabbits' Den Matthew Westwood , 2015 single work review
— Appears in: The Weekend Australian , 7-8 February 2015; (p. 3-4)
'Not everyone thinks of turning a children’s picture book into an opera, writes Matthew Westwood.'
New Opera in Australia : It's Not Over Till Senator Brandis Sings Steve Dow , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Guardian Australia , 19 March 2015;
'It’s hard enough to mount an Australian opera, let alone revive one. Ahead of the findings of the national opera review, we hear from the rabbits and the riders.'
Helpmanns Looking to Keep up with Emerging Trends Matthew Westwood , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 28 July 2015; (p. 15)
Genre-bending Bunnies Storm Helpmanns Ashleigh Wilson , Matthew Westwood , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 28 July 2015; (p. 5)
Creatures of Havoc John Marsden , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Saturday Age , 22-23 August 2015; (p. 8) The Sydney Morning Herald , 22-23 August 2015; (p. 8-9)
One Little Bit of Help, Man Antimo Iannella , Anna Vlach , Matt Gilbertson , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Advertiser , 28 July 2015; (p. 21)
Gorgeous SA Return Matt Gilbertson , 2015 single work column
— Appears in: The Sunday Mail , 18 October 2015; (p. 87)
Hitting the Right Note Nick Galvin , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The Age , 16-17 January 2016; (p. 18)
The Rabbits Hops on to Opera Prize Shortlist Simone Fox Koob , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The Australian , 3 March 2016; (p. 14)
Stage Award Race a Tale of Two Tims Stephen Bevis , 2016 single work column
— Appears in: The West Australian , 21 June 2016; (p. 17)
Last amended 30 Nov 2016 13:41:00
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